Monday, March 10, 2014

The Importance of Knowledge in Middle Grade (Ooh, & a giveaway!)

MMGM aka Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday was created by Shannon Messenger to give middle grade reads the attention they deserve. I'm joining in, today. If you'd like to see more MG books, click HERE to follow other participants.

Today, the amazingly talented Susan Kaye Quinn has agreed to share with us her middle grade fantasy novel and her verve for the importance of knowledge. I had the pleasure of reading the first few chapters of this story while still in its infancy. Loved it!

Win paperbacks, magick wands, and a $25 Gift Card! (see below)

Warrior Faeries and Math Magick
by Susan Kaye Quinn

My new middle grade fantasy, Faery Swap, is about a fourteen-year-old boy who is tricked into swapping places with a warrior faery prince and has to find his way back home before the dimensional window between their worlds slams shut.
2 minute book trailer

In my prior life, I worked for NASA and got a lot of degrees in engineering. (Yes, I really am a rocket scientist and have the Ph.D. to prove it!) I used the logical-left-side of my brain to design aircraft engines and study global warming. Now that I write fiction, I love using the creative-right-side of my brain to create compelling characters and dramatic adventures as well as the logical-left-side to weave math, science, and technology into my stories. Math and science have always seemed wondrous to me, so it made sense to me that the warrior faeries in Faery Swap would steal mathematical knowledge from humans in order to enhance their magickal faery powers. 

In my story, knowledge is literally power.

I'm passionate about this message - that knowledge is power and math is magick - and the ethical use of that knowledge is a key theme throughout the story. I wanted to share this message, so I created a Virtual Author Visit, Common-Core-based Teacher's Guide, and a card-based game, so any teacher, anywhere on the planet, could share this message with their students.

9 minute Virtual Author Visit

In this video, I share my background in science and engineering and talk about the book, then show how humans use math in the real world to do amazing things... even without magick to help them. 

The Teacher's Guide, activities, card game, and videos are meant flexible - teachers and librarians can spend as little as 2 minutes sharing the trailer or they can use the materials to create a whole unit around the book and the Knowledge is Power When Math is Magick theme. 

My hope is that some of my love for math and science will rub off on young readers, and that kids will see they each have an inner warrior faery capable of seeking knowledge and performing great deeds with it! (Click here to find out more about the Virtual Author Visit).

Susan Kaye Quinnis the author of the bestselling Mindjack Trilogy, which is young adult science fiction. Faery Swap is her foray into middle grade, which is her first writing love. Her business card says "Author and Rocket Scientist" and she always has more speculative fiction fun in the works. You can subscribe to her newsletter (hint: new subscribers get a free short story!) or stop by her blog to see what she's up to.

Faery Swap
Kindle | Nook | Print

Fourteen-year-old Finn is tricked into swapping places with a warrior faery prince and has to find his way back home before the dimensional window between their worlds slams shut. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I think Susan's approach to this story is wonderful! What do you think?
 photo Sheri2.png

31 comments:

  1. Great video and virtual classroom visit, Sue! I want a video production team like yours!!!

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    1. <3 Thank you Dianne! It's not as hard as it looks - just let me know if you want to do one!

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  2. I loved how Susan used math in her fantasy. It added a unique element to her already great story. Hope her ideas to reach out to middle grade teachers and kids work.

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    1. I hope so, too! Thanks, Natalie!

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    2. I hope so, too! The story is pretty exciting, so I'm thinking she'll find success!

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  3. I love the premise! And Susan, I also love how you mixed your various loves and strengths and made them one.

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    1. My brain works better when all the pieces hum together. :) Thank you, Barbara!

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    2. Gosh, I love your last sentence. Quoting you!

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  4. What a great story idea. Very slick. Super looking cover that should especially appeal to boy readers.

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    1. My three boys have enjoyed it, so I hope you're right!

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  5. omgosh Susan! How did I not know that about you!? So interesting and this sounds like a fantastic story! Congrats!

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    1. Hey, CQG! Good to see you! Thanks so much for stopping by! - And to Sheri for hosting me!

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  6. I really love this trailer. Susan did a great job with it.

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    1. Thank you, Kelly! I pulled that one together pretty fast, because the principal of my kids' school wanted to play my book trailer on the morning announcements... except I didn't have one! I'm pretty pleased with how it came out, though.

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  7. I love the concept of math and magic woven together and interconnected! Very intriguing. Nice job on all of the above!

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  8. I always enjoy Susan's writing! She's written some terrific books - can't wait to read this one too :)
    Love promoting Math!!! I'm sure my students will love this one!
    My favourite MG book of all time would probably have to be The Giver ... or Anne of Green Gables! So many great ones :)

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    1. Yes for ANNE! Loved her.

      I think how Susan is promoting math and science is awesome. Hopefully, it helps reluctant kiddos like I was to embrace the two.

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  9. Susan, I didn't know you were a rocket scientist!
    Math was never my favorite subject. Ironically I now work with computers and programs. Go figure.

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    1. Yeah, a rocket scientist. Holy &#*$)%^!!! I remember when she nonchalantly mentioned that to me. I was like, "What? That is like a huge deal." I think I called her smarty pants, or something. LOL

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  10. Loved the book trailer for Susan's new book! Looks like an exciting story with an awesome premise. My boys would love this book, for sure.

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  11. What a fun trailer, Susan! I love the idea of your book and it's definitely one that my nephews will enjoy.

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  12. I think it's wonderful that you're engaging readers in such a way, Susan. As a kid, I was used to G.I. Joe's message of "knowing is half the battle." We don't see a lot of that nowadays.

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  13. Sue, I need you here teaching homeschool science. I'm faking it pretty good though. :-) Love the trailer. I cannot wait to get your book. I'm getting a Sue Quinn library. *waves to Sheri*

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    1. Ah! I love that - 'Sue Quinn library!'

      *waves back*

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  14. Oh, I love this premise! I have a math-loving middle grade son, and I love that the magick is tied to math. Great trailer too!

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  15. Great trailer! I'm passing this along to a friend who home schools. She's part of a larger group of home schoolers, too, so hopefully she'll pass it to them, too. As far as my favorite MG book, I've got one in mind but I don't remember the name of it. I was reading it with my son and we got sidetracked (he was determined we finish Harry Potter). The writing was gorgeous. Truly just luscious. I need to find that book again.

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    1. That's wonderful to share this with a home schooling friend. Home schoolers are amazing! I could never do that.

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  16. Creating teach guides and the like are smart. Gives your book another opportunity for readers.

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  17. Okay, I'm sold. The kids will EAT THIS UP. And I won't mind reading it out loud to them. Yay! Win-win.

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  18. I had no idea Susan was a rocket scientist. I also thought she was more of a YA/NA author, so this is awesome.

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  19. loved the Trailer! exciting story :)

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